The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, has charged the new board and management of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, to change its strategy to fully align the activities of the commission to the roadmap set by the Bureau of Public Service Reforms. The SGF gave the advice yesterday at the 3-day retreat for the board and management of the commission, held at the Ibom Le Meridien Hotel in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
Senator Anyim, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the SGF office, Mr. Linus Awete, said that President Goodluck Jonathan had directed that NDDC should be supported to develop a management structure that is fit-for-purpose, that can ensure that the board and management team of the commission work effectively and harmoniously to deliver on its mandate.
He said: "The signals we are getting now is that the commission has started operating with the development templates that are built on the condition for mutual accountability. To us, such stride is commendable as it is in alignment with the principles of transformation agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan, which is also in tandem with our collective national vision as articulated in our National Strategic Development Plan to address the enormous challenges facing Nigeria in the quest for economic prosperity."
He said that the expectations of the Presidency was that there should be a correlation between the Federal Government policy thrust as encapsulated in the Transformation Agenda and the activities of the NDDC. He acknowledged that substantial progress had been made in transforming the economic fortunes of the Niger Delta region, noting, however, that there was still more work to be done by the new administration in the NDDC.
The SGF said that the report of a recent monitoring exercise undertaken by his office on the activities of the NDDC was encouraging. According to him, the "exercise commended the great strides the commission had made with the completion of some projects and programmes that had direct impact on the beneficiaries of the locations where the projects were sited. These projects include agricultural, entrepreneurial scheme, solar-powered water projects, rural electrification and road projects that aid integration among communities."
Senator Anyim said that the report also noted major "constraints to the timely completion of projects. These include, delayed interim payments to contractors, poor consultancy work, undue requests for reviews and variations as well as inadequate funding of mega projects arising from faulty planning."